Hello, bloggers. Did you miss me? In case you haven't noticed, it's been an incredibly long time since I last posted on my blog. And I know bloggers aren't supposed to apologize to the reader for not writing sooner—else they look unprofessional and unblogger-like (oh no!)—but I seem to be breaking the rules all the time, so I don't think one more broken rule will do me any harm. Honestly—which, by the way, I consider to be a useless word, unless being a liar is the norm, but it looks and sounds nice at the beginning of the sentence—honestly, I've constantly felt guilty for not devoting more time to my poor, pathetic blog for the past several months. It was one of those typical waves of frustration that resulted in a long break. But this time, I wasn't sure if I would ever return to my blog. Scary, huh?
When I finally did return some months later, I realized that, well, first of all, nothing new had showed up on the front page, which wasn't surprising at all, considering that I'm usually the one who makes it appear there. I also noticed a depressing drop in traffic, and an abundance of unmoderated comments, which I dread sorting through. Also, I, being the lazy being I am, got behind on emails and wonderful guest posting opportunities. And maybe, if you enjoy reading my blog, you were slightly concerned that I may have fallen off the face of the earth. If so, don't stress, because fortunately, gravity doesn't allow that sort of thing to happen. It was only an extreme case of blogging boredom.
The DilemmaBlogging is a way for me to fuse some of my most enjoyable hobbies—writing, web design, and being creative—into one. That's great for me, but sadly, bloggers, for the most part, have lost all their creativity. Blogging has lost its glamour and the blogs themselves have become dull, lifeless businesses.
Yes, this is another rant, and I guarantee it won't be the last.
The content on a blog is only a small matter now. Writing is nothing more than a formula, and it's okay to be mediocre—after all, sentence structure and punctuation have lost their purpose in this world, and any significant points to be made are too lost to be found in an overabundance of words.
Writing is no longer an art. No skill or knowledge is required—anyone can pump a "masterpiece" out of a fluff machine. It's easy. As long as you know how to click the "Publish" button and smile as you watch traffic soar, all is well.
Creativity is the lifeblood of blogging, but that fact was forgotten long ago. Fortunately, for some of you, there are a few small areas of the blogosphere that haven't been hit so hard by the plague, so enjoy it while it lasts, because it probably won't last long. But sadly, I dove directly into the niche where the problem is the most rampant (it is, after all, where the problem was created), and started my blog. And when I did, I decided I wanted to be successful like all the other bloggers, and naturally, I took their advice. I tried to write what people wanted to hear, post regularly, and do all the things they promised would make my blog a success.
The only things I gained were counterproductive: a hatred for constraining rules, a couple of silly blogging schedules that never worked, and the strange idea that not posting "on time" would be my blog's undoing. Blogging has become a bore for me—it's no longer exciting, and I've forgotten what it's like to enjoy it.
But I did realize that most of the recommended tactics for blogging aren't intended for people like me, who want the freedom to be creative. I like quality over quantity. I want to post when I want, how I want, about whatever I want. I don't want to care how many people like my blog or hate it.
And yay for me! I cannot conform to my niche, no matter how hard I try.
My SolutionSorry if I disappoint you, but I'm not an all-powerful blogger, and try as I may, I can't change the blogosphere. The only thing I can change is the way I blog.
Up until recently, when boredom struck, I didn't know why or how. I usually blamed myself for having a short attention span. I determined that any problems I encountered—whether it be low traffic or a lack of creative juices—were all caused by me not adhering to the "rules of blogging", when in fact, it was because I tried to go along with the rest of the bloggers that I always fell behind.
I'm tired of blogging that way. So, I've decided to make these 4 drastic changes:
Change #1: I'm going to blog when and how I want
Yet again, I'm breaking the rules. I'm no longer going to feel the need to update my blog at certain times. If it takes more time to create great content, I'm going to spend that time creating it without feeling the constraints of a schedule. This means consistent quality on an inconsistent schedule.
Change #2: I'm changing my blog's niche
For the longest time, I've been using Template Faerie to provide blog advice. But it's time to do what I planned on doing from the beginning. I'm now going to spend a large portion of my blogging time creating free templates for Blogger, and maybe even Wordpress. Please note that I said "MAYBE".
Of course, more time spent on templates leaves less time for articles, which leads me to the next change...
Change #3: I'm no longer going to write articles for Template Faerie
Calm down—it's not the end of the world. This doesn't mean I'll stop writing articles altogether, because I love writing and I could never stop, even if I wanted to. But I want writing to be my hobby, not a chore. So, instead of posting articles here all the time, they'll mostly be used for guest posting on other blogs. I've been wanting to contribute to other blogs anyway, and have even gotten a few invitations, but the demand for articles on my blog has prevented me from doing so, and I've had the most difficult time writing for both.
Guest posting will give me more freedom when it comes to when and what I write. There are some topics I don't think would be right for Template Faerie, but would be perfect for some other blog. Plus, I can't promote my blog from my blog. Because my articles will probably be few and far between, I want to use them in the best way possible, and it would be more beneficial to my blog to use them as a way to promote it.
Change #4: I'm going to create an extension to Template Faerie
If you've been enjoying the silly doodles I've been using in my posts lately, you'll want to know about the new blog I'm creating. It will feature lots of similar doodles and a few random blog tips. But that's all I can tell you for now; stay tuned for more news!
Oh yeah, and I'm thinking about changing my template again. This would be the forth time. Go ahead—tell me I'm insane.
My advice to youI hope you can take something away from this. This dilemma isn't my dilemma—it's the dilemma of the blogosphere. But you can work around it. Here are a few tips.
- If you're bummed about your blog, find the root of the problem and deal with it. If your traffic is low, why? Is your content lousy? Are you promoting it in the best way?
- Let blogging be what it should be for you. Never let someone tell you how you should blog. It's your blog—do as you like.
- Last but not least, don't get depressed. People may not be as impressed with your blog as you anticipated, but you can't please everyone.
So there you have it. I'm starting all over. Maybe you should too.
I would love to hear from my fellow sufferers! Let me know what plans you have for your blog, and how you intend to tackle your blogging boredom.
By the way, I just set up a Google+ page, so please hop over and connect with me!